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  1. #11
    Senior Member Sirčne's Avatar
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    Have you experienced this?
    No. I never took dance as a child, only as an adult and all my teachers have been encouraging.

    Do you think it's acceptable?
    Certain things yes, certain things no. Short of defending against an attack, no teacher should ever place their hands on a student in anger. Harsh langugage (NOT profanity) I'm somewhat more in favor of if it's a) warranted (e.g. students are slacking and sloppy), and b) the students are age and skill appropriate.

    Have you ever heard of this in a belly dance class?
    No. My experience of BD classes so far is that everyone is really positive.

  2. #12
    V.I.P. Kashmir's Avatar
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    I have been hit (not hard) with a cane on several occasions to bring my consciousness to my posture. I haven't been personally cussed. Closest would be classes where the teacher has threatened to leave (after we'd paid) unless we did X or Y (in once case I think it was justifiable - in the other not).

    I do think many teachers are too soft (including me). Particularly frustrating is students who come back from a workshop being mercilessly drilled and apparently accepting it - and saying how much improvement they saw - then when I try and up the drilling and correction they all go soggy and wimpy on me.

    ETA: Also what is "harsh" - judging from this forum anyone who suggests a student is not perfect, or needs to work on something, or whose beliefs are based on fantasy is considered harsh by some people.
    Last edited by Kashmir; 02-23-2013 at 11:27 PM.

  3. #13
    Member Munniko's Avatar
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    Have you ever experienced this? Not directly I taught children for a year and they swapped out new teachers (unless you extended your contract) yearly the gem of a teacher I was following encouraged other students to bully this poor girl in the kindergarten class because he thought it was funny when she got upset and freaked out. I never approved of that and stopped it immediately on my taking over the class.

    Do you ever think it is acceptable On the other hand I wasn't a coddling sort of teacher....all the time. I let the young kinds sit in my lap and braid my hair if they finished their work and I was checking it and we played learning games, but they knew when to get down to business. If you weren't going to behave you could stand in the corner with your hands up (so I knew where they were, but it was never for longer than a minute) or you got to talk to the co-teacher (the school had a weird policy of students on being sent to a principal unless it was super bad and then the principal would basically coddle them further and ask them if everything was okay etc.) I will say after a few times even the bad kids realized it was more fun to be with the teacher than against the teacher. I half regret not staying with the company because the kids saw so much improvement (especially that girl who is in fact now taking belly dance lessons and it was her moms idea )

    Have you ever heard of this in a Belly dance class? Well not the physical abuse part, I've heard of teachers never being satisfied, but usually it is teachers coddling students and not critiquing them so they don't grow. I'm always nervous about asking questions in class because I have awkward ways to describe things (most recently "my upper back feels off and my body is trying to urge me to stab it until it is better") so usually I don't get corrected unless I draw attention to myself which as a result I'm not sure exactly what level of technique I'm at ....but I think it is because of my bollywood experience helping me fake it till I make it.

  4. #14
    V.I.P. Ariadne's Avatar
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    Have you ever experienced this?
    In public school, yes, but it was the exception to the rule and was never physical. I would never stay in a dance class that did either.

    Wait, in karate it was standard to use a bamboo sword or wood staff to check posture but that was because if they could knock you over you were doing it wrong. I assume that isn't what we're talking about though?

    Do you ever think it is acceptable
    No, and it boggles my mind how anyone does.

    Have you ever heard of this in a Belly dance class?
    Only on here. Never locally.

    Quote Originally Posted by AndreaSTL View Post
    Another problem teachers face is having the time and/or financing to run multiple levels. If a teacher can only do one or two classes a week then it's likely that dancers with different abilities will be in the same class. Rather than run two groups in the same class time everyone gets lumped together.
    This has been coming up recently. As someone who used to take a mixed level class I'm wondering if my experience was the exception to the rule? Our teacher had an outline that she used to teach the basics to the newer students and then as she decided we were ready to move on she would add layers or have us use a harder movement in the place of the simpler movements. It was "this is the combos to this part of the music. Now you, you and you will be doing this instead." or "We're going to be practicing our walks. Here's the basics and ____ will be doing it with this layer as well." We all received feedback based on our level of skill.

    Is it really that unusual?

  5. #15
    Senior Member Sirčne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kashmir View Post
    ETA: Also what is "harsh" - judging from this forum anyone who suggests a student is not perfect, or needs to work on something, or whose beliefs are based on fantasy is considered harsh by some people.
    "Harsh" will vary from person to person, but if you want an example I offer "the crazy woman with the pyramid system": Dance Moms - Episodes, Videos, & Schedule - myLifetime.com

  6. #16
    V.I.P. Jane's Avatar
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    Good point everyone! I'm still mulling this over. Lot's of thoughts are running through my head on this one.

  7. #17
    Member AyaKara's Avatar
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    Out of curiosity Jane, why did you decide to make this thread? If you don't mind my asking, that is

  8. #18
    V.I.P. Jane's Avatar
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    I saw it being discussed on a Facebook group and it struck me as odd that some of the people accepted these things as a normal part of teaching. I saw some of it at ballet schools my daughter attended and it ultimately resulted in her leaving because of similar issues.

  9. #19
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    Have you experienced this? A bit of yelling from time to time, but nothing truly demeaning. I got rapped on my knuckles by a music teacher once. No, I don't think abusing people is acceptable and I am not a fan of hitting or yanking people's bodies around.

    Have you ever heard of this in a belly dance class?

    I have been told of a teacher screaming abuse at her students; also going into other classes and sniggering at the students, and slamming a door in the face of another teacher in view of students. But in general, in my experience bellydance teachers accept that most of the people in their classes are hobbyists who are in class for pleasure, not training for a career, and do not take an abusive tack, not least because they want them to come back.

    I think a teacher can forcefully call out corrections - aka yell - and can press students to keep going without being obnoxious about it.

  10. #20
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    I've never experienced abusive practices in dance. I would not mind if my belly dance teacher were tougher on me. I have come across sever horseback riding instructors who were verbally abusive. I had two nutty music teachers in middle school and high school - turned me off of music. My middle school teacher hurled a trumpet and cracked a window. My high school teacher would have these meltdowns before our recitals as though we were performing in Carnegie hall and were not prepared. It was just the school auditorium with parents and I attentive students!

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